A true Puerto Rican girl - my friend Iris loves spending time with her mamma Evelyn. She is very proud of her heritage and really enjoys eating the food of her youth. I was really touched when Iris and Evelyn showed up to my house to teach me how to make their most cherished dish, Pasteles.
Pasteles are very important in Puerto Rican culture. Served at the holidays with rice, beans and tostones, they are a labor of love. The exterior (masa) is made from unripe, green bananas. You have to grate each one on a box grater to get a fine pudding like consistency. The abuelas never complain, but it is labor intensive! The filling is a delicious blend of pork and traditional Puerto Rican spices and ingredients like pimentos and olives. The achiote oil gives it a beautiful red hue and fills the entire kitchen with a very Latin aroma.Read More